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When did nerds become really shitty people?

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Feb 22, 2009
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Throwing labels around like a closing down sale at a supermarket.

A thing that will get you identified as a nerd is being abrasive and just saying things that you think instead of engaging in a more socially calculated way. But the internet makes it possible for many more to behave like this publicly and gain popularity by earning "un-nerdy" social capital. If you want to be respected as an alpha dog you even have to appear to be abrasive and quick to be judgemental.
 

Sami+

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May 2, 2013
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I use to go to a board game group at my local game shop. It was mostly people 20 & up had a pretty good mix of men and women.

On the other side of the gaming room they had in the basement were Warhammer 40k guys. I remember many days where new comers would show up and would end up leaving half way through the day because of how awful that group was to them. If it was a woman who was a newcomer it was very cringe worthy the things they said to them.

Then there are the MTG teens who came and unpacked their decks quietly in a corner. That group was mostly dudes wearing their anime shirts and looking kind of unwashed. You could always tell when they arrived is when your nostrils filled with the stench of BO.

Overall I can understand why nerd/geek culture can be seen as being Misogynistic and hostile towards outsiders even within the nerd community.

One thing I found SUPER weird was the dichotomy between the Melee/Smash 4 people in the Smash community here at my university. Obviously there's a good amount of overlap but as a newcomer to the community back around April or so I noticed that I spent a lot of my time hanging out in general with the Melee dudes who were all pretty chill and well adjusted people, whereas the Smash 4 side of the room in tournaments always smelled worse (I eventually figured out which people were bringing the dank but nothing could really be done about it) and felt less friendly. Our tournies were held at a local apartment complex, and eventually a PSA went out that we needed to get our act together because every other Tuesday came to be known as "Smelly Day" by patrons. Like wow, what?

It was really funny though, I came in expecting the exact opposite. I don't play Melee at all (too high of a learning curve to get into it right now) and have a ton of fun with Smash 4 which is why I'm there, but at every event I find myself shooting the shit with friends on the Melee side and then just going over to the S4 side of the room when it's my turn to play.

Escapist fantasy has a lot of appeal when your life is a mess otherwise. I can't speak for anyone else, but I strongly suspect that was a large part of what made me so into games, fantasy novels, D&D, etc in my teen years. It was solace from the depression and the bullying and the awkwardness of youth.

Yeah I agree.

I grew up without many friends at all in elementary because I was just a really weird, awkward kid. My parents are immigrants and never bothered to learn the culture so my mom sent me to school looking like Steve Urkel every day (I'm not even joking lol) and raised me with a really weird, racist chip on my shoulder thinking that I was better than others on account of being Arab/Muslim. When I cried about kids making fun of me it was always because they were "jealous" of me and I came to believe it and just turned into even more of an awkward asshole. Also super overprotective, so I spent all my weekends at home playing video games.

Up until late high school when I realized I had a serious problem and wanted to change myself, games and Internet forums were the only real outlet I had. So I get it. But to the people that refuse to face their issues and develop as adults I frankly don't have any sympathy.

Edit - for the record since this is a pretty harsh sounding post I just wanna say I'm not trying to apply this to anyone here nor am I trying to make a statement against, like, Smash 4 players or whatever. Just sharing my relevant experiences recently and growing up.
 

blakep267

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Dec 9, 2013
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Anime nerds are cool with me. I can walk in and just start chatting anime and people are welcoming. Gaming and table top guys on the other hand...

When I was in college we had this sort of student lounge that had pool tables video game systems ping pong etc. so me and my friend decided to go check it out. When we got there it was almost as if we were infringing on their own little world. It was essentially a club and they really didn't want outsiders. I was just like this is a public area
 

WanderingWind

Mecklemore Is My Favorite Wrapper
Feb 4, 2009
34,654
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Nerds have always been shitty people. Most people are shitty people.

I know we're past this, but this is true. Did we suddenly stop remembering the racist rednecks, the dudebro frat rapists, the old thieves in suits that run shit, the racists/sexist/homophobic people in all walks of life, from the hood to Hollywood? People are shitty. If you're seeing more shitty nerds, well, it's probably because we're the type of people to spend time on a gaming messaging board. AKA nerds. You see more of it in the circles you frequent.
 

olympia

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May 16, 2012
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The biggest change I've seen in the advent of social media are that "nerds" have taken it upon themselves to try to stop artistic expression and mold a writer/artist's story to whatever their agenda is. New nerds believe that they can change whatever they want by lambasting and harassing creative talent to change their story to be more PC or to fit whatever their idea they have for how a game/book/character should be represented.

Very rarely do I think any good comes from boycotts and digging into the personal life of a creator because of something they have represented in their work, and gamers/comic fans/nerds have created this atmosphere of entitlement to have a say in the creative process of media.

Before we would talk about Goku's power levels and who could beat who in comics. Now we worry about the political agenda of a writer's personal life and if we should ruin their career.

lmao

you on the other hand aren't pushing an agenda or anything
 

Gotdatmoney

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May 5, 2014
9,911
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Correlation doesn't imply causation but I do think it's worth discussing why so many socially awkward neckbeard types /just so happen/ to be super into gaming, anime, etc. like 99% of the time.

None of those things require you to be aroumd other people and build social skills?

I was huge into gaming especially when I was younger but when you do things like sports or clubs it forces you to be social. A lot of nerdy things almpst always have a compenent of isolation with them if you look hard enough.
 

User 73706

Banned
Aug 3, 2010
20,492
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Mary Esther, FL
The biggest change I've seen in the advent of social media are that "nerds" have taken it upon themselves to try to stop artistic expression and mold a writer/artist's story to whatever their agenda is. New nerds believe that they can change whatever they want by lambasting and harassing creative talent to change their story to be more PC or to fit whatever their idea they have for how a game/book/character should be represented.

Very rarely do I think any good comes from boycotts and digging into the personal life of a creator because of something they have represented in their work, and gamers/comic fans/nerds have created this atmosphere of entitlement to have a say in the creative process of media.

Before we would talk about Goku's power levels and who could beat who in comics. Now we worry about the political agenda of a writer's personal life and if we should ruin their career.

Yeah, protesting hetereonormativity in media just acts to the detriment of society as a whole. Who'd ever want more diversity?
 
Dec 5, 2009
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Yeah I agree.

I grew up without many friends at all in elementary because I was just a really weird, awkward kid. My parents are immigrants and never bothered to learn the culture so my mom sent me to school looking like Steve Urkel every day (I'm not even joking lol) and raised me with a really weird, racist chip on my shoulder thinking that I was better than others on account of being Arab/Muslim. When I cried about kids making fun of me it was always because they were "jealous" of me and I came to believe it and just turned into even more of an awkward asshole. Also super overprotective, so I spent all my weekends at home playing video games.

Up until late high school when I realized I had a serious problem and wanted to change myself, games and Internet forums were the only real outlet I had. So I get it. But to the people that refuse to face their issues and develop as adults I frankly don't have any sympathy.

Edit - for the record since this is a pretty harsh sounding post I just wanna say I'm not trying to apply this to anyone here nor am I trying to make a statement against, like, Smash 4 players or whatever. Just sharing my relevant experiences recently and growing up.

Yeah, your experience sounds a lot like mine, only my "better than others" thing was my oft-cited potential, IQ, etc, which was a beautiful double-edged sword of making me feel shitty for not being as successful as a bunch of doctors and standardized tests said I should be, and making me feel like I was better than most people because I was so much more intelligent than them.

It wasn't really until maybe the last 10 years or so that I've really come to terms with that and addressed it and (largely) stopped acting that way.
 

DoktorEvil

Banned
Dec 8, 2013
25,861
0
0
NYC, USA
What the hell is wrong with nerds today. Jeezus H.... I hung out with "the nerds" in highschool. You know what we talked about? Videogames, robotics, building PCs, anime, movies, debated what next gen console to get (Ps3/360/Wii) in college, and made fun of each others internet speeds. You know what we didnt talk about? Hating women, hating minorities, blaming women for our faults, pcmasterrace, or whatever the fuck is currently going on in the "nerd" sphere. Worst thing people did was pirate videogames.

So what the hell is going on? If anything I would have been THRILLED with all these dumb comic book movies, crazy videogames, and insane tech stuff. Its like nerd heaven. So why the hell is "nerd" culture now this horrible twisted real life 4chan thread.

Seriously though, what happened?

Because nerds can also be wholly shitty people?

Because anyone can put on glasses and follow Marvel & Star Wars movies and call themselves a nerd?

Because you seem to confuse nerd and geek?

Nerds are the ones who were getting A's in school and always correcting people, geeks were the ones spending way too much time playing with Yugioh/Pokemon/insert X card game and taking about anime. Sometimes there is overlap.
 

partyphone

Banned
Dec 27, 2012
5,890
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www.platformers.net
anyone who self identifies as nerd or geek is more likely to act out violently if they think their hobbies are being invaded by outsiders. it's where a lot of gamergate angst comes from. it's why they dismiss perfectly valid criticism as being PC policing. it's basically regressive assholes who are afraid of change. it's no mutants allowed writ large.
 

darthbob

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Jun 15, 2009
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I self identify as a nerd, and while I don't think I'm a shitty person I do find myself feeling quite apathetic about most social issues in the world.

Does that make me a shitty person?
 

Northeastmonk

Gold Member
Mar 18, 2013
13,759
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I love how upset people on this forum get when someone says something negative about nerds

I must have been around the wrong people for a few years because I get this faux pas feeling ever so often. I began thinking it was part of the persecution complex, but it doesn't feel that way all the time. I was surrounded by healthcare workers for a good 1.5 years or so. Their attitudes would please someone anti-nerd because they have a career to educate others on living healthy.You get your fare share of the recluse attitude. I see a point in going outside, exercising, and eating right. It's the whole part of you're a nerd means you're reclusive is what annoys me. Now I've changed careers because obviously I'm not the type, but it's rather odd how many negative things I heard about it. I heard more about the gaming side. Kids get violent, they become obese, people on the news say to get away from the controller, people hate zombies, and the latter. When I moved I met a few people who had nerdy hobbies, but they were very casual about it. I didn't even like what they liked. They spoke in 3rd person about the "guys".

I realize in all seriousness that's something else, but why even bring bring it up? I talked about it a few times, but I also knew I was there for something else. Then I deal with family who thinks the stereotype gamer is something you talk about when you want to put all your negative energy into something or it's something their kids should not mess with at all.

Sure, you can say gamer(s) are defensive. I just don't think it's this way in every state. In Nebraska we may have a large multiplayer base and we use to have a 3 story arcade and two GameStops/EB Games, and a mom and pop game store at one of our large intersections. All the arcades closed, only 1 GS is there now, and we have a few mom and pop stores. If anything it died down. The 3 story arcade moved and is now a Toy Story, kids go there for field trips arcade. It's a sad state because even our mall (Westroads) had Tilt become a fashion store. That arcade had 2 to 3 cabinets of all the fighting games. It was fun a few years ago, but it's all run dry. Now take what I'm saying with a grain of salt.

Living on your own in Nebraska isn't exactly a fantasy island either. I did for a year or so and I hated it. The only thing I hear at times are my own thoughts about gaming and what I read. I just find that even though we play games, none of us are exactly the same. The only thing we have in common is the fact that we purchased a product that is in this realm of "nerdom".

Today, this might be the only time I get to talk to someone about nerdy things. Otherwise I have to work on my career, possibly a house, and maybe a spouse. This is my only outlet. I sometimes feel that I have to come here because I get nothing anywhere else.

I don't want to feel like college was the only time I could be a nerd because that's all you'll see if you're searching out in the open. I didn't go to college and join the anime club. I do better online and by myself.
 

george_us

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Jul 23, 2008
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But it's also about how nerd culture as a cultural construct has a certain logic to it that rationalizes/excuses sexist / racist behavior. This is especially prevalent with the topic of women where nerd culture become entirely irrational in its exclusion and discrimination of women. You see how unrealistic some people are, even so-called "liberal" / "left-leaning" young (white) men, when they resort to incredibly conservative and extremistic reactions to matters of equality between the various genders, despite being having more progressive-leaning approaches to e.g. economics and class inequality.

Of course, sexism and racism and bigotry exist across society in all its different subcultures, but there is a specific way that nerd culture employs its view on women.
It's also disheartening because nerd realm likes to pretend it's somehow more progressive than those "other" cultures when it really isn't. For all the shit that corporate culture, sports culture, etc. are, they don't pretend to be something they aren't.
 

GeordieMark

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Dec 10, 2013
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They are no shittier than anyone else, and no less shitty either.

It's also disheartening because nerd realm likes to pretend it's somehow more progressive than those "other" cultures when it really isn't. For all the shit that corporate culture, sports culture, etc. are, they don't pretend to be something they aren't.

I used to be a big skateboarder and it used to get right on my tits how so many of my peers would laugh at the 'rude boys' or 'chavs' for all looking the same, when they were no better. I love the way groups of so-called 'alternative' people all dress the same as each other in a desperate attempt to be seen as 'different'.
 

Messofanego

Banned
Oct 31, 2011
46,366
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UK
twitter.com
When they had to be social with non-nerds. When they got involved in dating and faced rejection. Then the target changed from jocks to women.

"But I'm A Nice Guy" : https://vimeo.com/64941331

 

Takuan

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Jun 6, 2004
12,831
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What the hell is wrong with nerds today. Jeezus H.... I hung out with "the nerds" in highschool. You know what we talked about? Videogames, robotics, building PCs, anime, movies, debated what next gen console to get (Ps3/360/Wii) in college, and made fun of each others internet speeds. You know what we didnt talk about? Hating women, hating minorities, blaming women for our faults, pcmasterrace, or whatever the fuck is currently going on in the "nerd" sphere. Worst thing people did was pirate videogames.

So what the hell is going on? If anything I would have been THRILLED with all these dumb comic book movies, crazy videogames, and insane tech stuff. Its like nerd heaven. So why the hell is "nerd" culture now this horrible twisted real life 4chan thread.

Seriously though, what happened?

Shitty people have always been shitty; the internet simply gave them a voice and a global audience.
 

george_us

Member
Jul 23, 2008
9,034
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775
Sure they pretend to be things they are not. Honest groups of people like that don't exist on this planet.
Ehhh you generally know the rules going into a corporate job. Dress the part, fall in line, either become super good at your job or suck up to your boss, get promoted, repeat. Sports culture is all machismo, all the time.

Nerd culture is "We love creativity and artistic expression and diversity!" until women and minorities want to get involved in any meaningful way. Then it's "WHY MUST YOU TRAMPLE ARTISTIC EXPRESSION?! JUST SHUT UP AND PLAY VIDEOGAMES!"
 

A.D. Skinner

Member
Jan 25, 2014
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I feel like people need to be reminded that geeks and nerds are not the same thing. The word nerd has always primarily been negative.

A very simplified way to explain it is that a geek is the opposite of a nerd.

So as the early response says, nerds have always been arseholes. Go find some geeks to hang out with.
 

mattp

Member
Jun 10, 2009
7,510
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nj
the shitty ones have always been shitty
but they were too scared to act that way "irl", and now the internet has given them the courage to be the assholes they always were, inside
 

Glendemonium

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Mar 14, 2015
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since the film revenge of the nerds when Lewis Skolnick showed the world you can get away with date rape if your smart enough and wear a darth vader mask...... That along with the other fuckery in that film basically laid the ground work for the nerds shall inherit the earth narrative we all live in now

When I was younger and dumber, I never even noticed the rape part of that scene. After recently watching the movie without the rose tinted goggles I can see the whole movie started veering towards victimization complex.

The jocks were portrayed as criminal supervillains. Sure, there were asshole jocks that got all the women, typical alpha male blowhard. But the few I knew were cool and grew up to be real cool people. Like nerds, there are jerks in nerd-dom.

I knew this one real angry kid who was so obsessed with God of War, he was also very possessive of his wife and when I tried to offer an opinion of why I didn't care for Kratos this guy was pissed, nearly blurted out the N-word. Always had a cynical sarcastic tone... and yes, he's a gamer.

Another nerd was an SNK fanboy who constantly ripped on everything I liked be it anime, movies, videogames, etc.

Also dealt with the PC Master Race guy, anti-Simpsons guy, anti-family guy guy, the "Star Trek DP9 is better than NG" guy... the point is, there are plenty of bad apple nerds that ruin things.
 

Sami+

Member
May 2, 2013
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Tallahassee
When I was younger and dumber, I never even noticed the rape part of that scene. After recently watching the movie without the rose tinted goggles I can see the whole movie started veering towards victimization complex.

The jocks were portrayed as criminal supervillains. Sure, there were asshole jocks that got all the women, typical alpha male blowhard. But the few I knew were cool and grew up to be real cool people. Like nerds, there are jerks in nerd-dom.

I knew this one real angry kid who was so obsessed with God of War, he was also very possessive of his wife and when I tried to offer an opinion of why I didn't care for Kratos this guy was pissed, nearly blurted out the N-word. Always had a cynical sarcastic tone... and yes, he's a gamer.

Another nerd was an SNK fanboy who constantly ripped on everything I liked be it anime, movies, videogames, etc.

Also dealt with the PC Master Race guy, anti-Simpsons guy, anti-family guy guy, the "Star Trek DP9 is better than NG" guy... the point is, there are plenty of bad apple nerds that ruin things.

Oh yeah I had a negative bias against jocks in high school for sure, but my good friend's dorm-mate this year was very much a jock and a really rad dude. He'd let me borrow his stuff occasionally and even watched us play through Dark Souls lol.

It all comes down to how you interact with others really. If anything I've got a bias against nerds now just because of how socially awkward they tend to be, despite sharing a lot of interests with them.

I remember one dude who used to hang in the little gaming/anime corner at the community college student union straight up tailed me to one of my classes because I asked him a question about where the story went in Bleach. Like bro I watched it five years ago and just wanted a quick answer not a fucking synopsis haha.
 

Placiibo

Banned
Jun 2, 2015
118
0
0
What the hell is wrong with nerds today. Jeezus H.... I hung out with "the nerds" in highschool. You know what we talked about? Videogames, robotics, building PCs, anime, movies, debated what next gen console to get (Ps3/360/Wii) in college, and made fun of each others internet speeds. You know what we didnt talk about? Hating women, hating minorities, blaming women for our faults, pcmasterrace, or whatever the **** is currently going on in the "nerd" sphere. Worst thing people did was pirate videogames.

So what the hell is going on? If anything I would have been THRILLED with all these dumb comic book movies, crazy videogames, and insane tech stuff. Its like nerd heaven. So why the hell is "nerd" culture now this horrible twisted real life 4chan thread.

Seriously though, what happened?

Nerds achieved power and unleashed their wildest dreams on us all. Turns out not everyone wanted comic books to take over the movie/TV business. As for the hate, I think those people were always there. They just found out the internet was a platform for their voice. And when I say "internet" what I mean is "Youtube comments section".
 

tengiants

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Mar 8, 2006
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It's really sad to me that generalizing and labeling is becoming the norm on the Internet. There's a lot more nuance to the world and you're only hurting yourselves labeling things and putting things into boxes.

It'd be better world if people judged individually, rather than letting bias and simplification be your lens to the world.
 
Dec 5, 2009
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Mount Airy, MD
It's really sad to me that generalizing and labeling is becoming the norm on the Internet. There's a lot more nuance to the world and you're only hurting yourselves labeling things and putting things into boxes.

But it's so easy! And with the advent of insular, narrowly-focused online communities, you never have to step outside that bubble.
 

TalonJH

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Aug 14, 2013
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With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility

Nerds aren't at the bottom anymore. We've become the jocks.
 
Oct 10, 2014
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I like how nerds have a history of being picked on and looked down on, but now that its okay to be a nerd, they do the exact same thing to non nerds or other nerds.
 

PSqueak

Banned
Jan 31, 2015
14,161
1
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I use to go to a board game group at my local game shop. It was mostly people 20 & up had a pretty good mix of men and women.

On the other side of the gaming room they had in the basement were Warhammer 40k guys. I remember many days where new comers would show up and would end up leaving half way through the day because of how awful that group was to them. If it was a woman who was a newcomer it was very cringe worthy the things they said to them.

Then there are the MTG teens who came and unpacked their decks quietly in a corner. That group was mostly dudes wearing their anime shirts and looking kind of unwashed. You could always tell when they arrived is when your nostrils filled with the stench of BO.

Overall I can understand why nerd/geek culture can be seen as being Misogynistic and hostile towards outsiders even within the nerd community.

I love hobby shop stories, my hobby shop is not very awful but i do have a couple of stories.

-One time i was looking to buy some Yugioh booster packs, but when i was looking at the TCG rack there was a lack of Yugioh, which was weird since it's basically their main source of income and they usually are well stocked, so i asked where the yugi stuff was, and i swear this happened, the store owner said this "Today is magic the gathering night, so we have to take away all the Yugi stuff off the shelves before the players come, you'll find the yugi stuff if you comeback tomorrow".
Apparently, Magic players would go ballistic if they saw yugioh stuff on their sacred MTG night.

-Another time i was browsing for some figurines and comics, a screen was playing a dvd from one of the "Press Play" videogame concerts, i stopped browsing to watch a beautiful live rendition of "Baba yetu", because i love that song, and i over heard some guy go "why the fuck is there a black guy singing?", I was shocked by the display of racism and ignorance, yes, i wonder why a black person is singing in swahilli.
 

KidDork

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Sep 2, 2009
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There are more life or death, increasingly loud slap fights on the internet than there ever were hanging out with your friends. In truth, likely nothing has changed when it comes to hanging out with your friends, unless you got some loud mouthed friends.

This.

The internet has this magic Asshole Potion that takes effect on too many people when they log onto a forum.
 

shiftplusone

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Sep 14, 2009
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I'm 28 and I can't think of a time where I haven't had some sort of nerd interest, as well as each groups of friends i've had.

I met most of my current friend group playing magic and heroclix at a comic shop so I'm well versed in this. And I saw just the fucking worst people in the world when it came to being accepting or even tolerantly pleasant to others.

The kids who played YuGiOh are by far the worst. just straight up fucking mean to eachother for no reason, and heaven forbid a girl walked into the shop.

Luckily the top 3 employees on the food chain were all women and they put a stop to that as soon as it happened.

The friends I grew up with were "pcmasterrace" types but not in this aggressive hateful ways that is prevalent now. It was more jokingly like "you cant even play quake on a 64 whats the point" but we would still play goldeneye all the time as well as a bunch of games across all platforms. It was always

The PC Master Race people have taken this "we prefer the PC" idea and turned it into something really gross


Putting PC Master race right next to racism and misogyny,

Who is the shitty people again?

Everyone to various degrees?
 

entremet

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Dec 6, 2008
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I honestly only see these communities online.

All the nerds I've known IRL have been the most progressive people I've ever met--pro LGBT rights, pro environment, anti war on drugs, pro feminism.

Actually, I was introduced to feminism by my nerdy neighbor as a 10 year old.
 

potam

Banned
May 4, 2013
6,554
0
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The PC Master Race people have taken this "we prefer the PC" idea and turned it into something really gross

lol what. I literally can't even on a whole nother level, unless there's some secret PC gaming community that also commits some sort of heinous crimes that I don't know about
 

darthbob

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Jun 15, 2009
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The PC Master Race people have taken this "we prefer the PC" idea and turned it into something really gross

I'd say that for the most part the people who group themselves in with the PC superiority do it not out of disdain for their brethren who play on consoles, but as a slightly satirical "hey we're all pc gamers let's talk about how awesome graphics are". Of course, in every community you'll have the bad apples, the outliers, the vocal minority who cast a bad light on an otherwise decent group.

#NotAllNerds /s
 

jstripes

Banned
Dec 9, 2012
13,478
1
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Nerds/geeks have always been generally horrible but mostly harmless people with poor social skills, but in the past they were socially isolated and tended to operate on their own or in small groups.

The internet changed that social isolation bit, along with the explosion of "geek culture" and conventions, and marketers pandering to them and putting them on a pedestal because of their extreme willingness to spend money to fill the holes in their lives.

They still have poor social skills, but so do the countless others they socialize with, so it's a terrible negative feedback loop that empowers the worst of their traits.
 
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People who feel marginalized in some way tend to establish some sort of pecking order with those they perceive as below them, so they can feel that at least they're better than somebody. Hence poor white racism, MRA attitudes toward women, and gamer nerds who pick on furries or anime fans.

How do you help this? Help people feel better about who they are and where they are in life, rather than treating them worse and making them feel worthless.
 

VanWinkle

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Jul 8, 2011
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My friends all talk about the same thing you say nerds used to talk about. Games, internet, comics and movies, etc. We never talk about race or gender or whatever. I think you will have people like that in any sector at any time, but they have just made themselves more visible lately.
 

jstripes

Banned
Dec 9, 2012
13,478
1
0
People who feel marginalized in some way tend to establish some sort of pecking order with those they perceive as below them, so they can feel that at least they're better than somebody. Hence poor white racism, MRA attitudes toward women, and gamer nerds who pick on furries or anime fans.

How do you help this? Help people feel better about who they are and where they are in life, rather than treating them worse and making them feel worthless.

Can we all agree that Bronies are just asking for it?
 

RedSwirl

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Mar 29, 2009
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That last post I made was just a stream of thought I typed down. Now, I don't think nerds are a really unique part of what's going on with social issues today in general. As the next generation is coming of age -- the generation of 80's and 90's children, we're getting a whole new wave of activism from minorities and other oppressed groups, which is being naturally met by a lot of push-back. The "nerd" sector is just a microcosm of this in my opinion.

If there is a difference with the "nerd" sector, it's that nerds have traditionally seen themselves as an oppressed group, not recognizing that oppression and privileged is a non-binary, three-dimensional thing. But I guess a lot of other groups have also proved incapable of seeing past their own adversities and pain to understand the adversities and pain of others.

Many nerds may have also completely identified themselves with their hobbies for whatever reason (being extremely introverted for instance), seeing those hobbies as almost the sole redeeming features of themselves and their lives. Those people may feel incredibly threatened upon meeting someone who has the same level of obsession with those hobbies while also having a balanced lifestyle and/or being physically attractive. That makes it all the more difficult for nerds to see and understand any oppression that person may have gone through.

And yes, the internet multiplied the effects of all these factors.

A lot of responses here though make me think of OT and Gaming Side GAF as basically two different forums, almost to the point where I wonder why they even share the same site. I see a lot of people in OT pretty much almost forget that GAF is a gaming forum and is thus going to inevitably contain a high proportion of socially awkward nerds. I'm not surprised at all when I read dating-age threads or a lot of the stuff on gaming side.

I'm most shocked though at all the "nerds have always been shitty people" responses coming from what is still a video game forum. Nerds are of course a spectrum just like every other community, but the sentiment here seems to assume their social awkwardness is their own fault. Whether or not it is, is another discussion entirely, but I've seen that kind of talk elsewhere essentially spark the most violent reaction from nerds themselves. It can very easily be interpreted as the exact same language "jocks" traditionally used when oppressing nerds.

People who feel marginalized in some way tend to establish some sort of pecking order with those they perceive as below them, so they can feel that at least they're better than somebody. Hence poor white racism, MRA attitudes toward women, and gamer nerds who pick on furries or anime fans.

How do you help this? Help people feel better about who they are and where they are in life, rather than treating them worse and making them feel worthless.

I guess this is more succinct version of what I just said.
 
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